Another person was approaching the southern mountain gate.
Ming Guoxing was surprised to see him, and he got up hastily to bow to the approaching person.
Jing Jiu walked past him after nodding toward him. Soon, Jing Jiu turned into a white speck in the distance.
Jing Jiu didn't ride the sword today. It was not because he was concerned about the courtesy, nor did he consider it too troublesome to dismantle the Great Formation of Green Mountain.
He had no need to worry about all this now that he had the command board with him.
It was only that he was more used to walking in comparison to riding the sword for a journey less than thirty miles.
He could enjoy the views on the road when walking, and also it would be easier for him to maintain a peaceful mind as he thought over and calculated those matters in his mind.
It didn't take long before he arrived at the South Pine Pavilion.
Under the roof-like pine trees were dozens of small courtyards. The young external disciples were either practicing their boxing routines under the trees or meditating by the stream.
It was more than thirty years ago that he and Liu Shisui studied here. Jing Jiu had already forgotten many details of his stay here, like that boring youth by the surname of Xue, and he couldn't remember which elder was his granduncle. In comparison, he could remember what had happened eight hundred years ago more clearly. He could still remember clearly until now that his elder brother watched him on the square in front of the grand hall as he gradually turned into a dark speck when the Grandmaster took him away from the Royal Palace of Zhaoge City.
It was the Immortal Daoyuan, the Grandmaster, who had brought him to Green Mountain in person, because he was believed to be a true genius in Cultivation.
After his arrival on Green Mountain, Jing Jiu hadn't seen the Grandmaster that often before he died due to Nan Qü's sneak attack.
In the next one hundred years, his Master cultivated diligently behind closed doors in an effort to break through the Hidden Heaven State to kill Nan Qü on the Foggy Island. Unfortunately, he pushed the process too hard and too fast, and died of a dissolved Dao Heart.
The situation had changed as a result; he and his Big Brother became two orphans who had no elders to take care of them, spending their days on Shangde Peak miserably.
His Big Brother took on some disciples without hesitation. He had two talented personal disciples, Yuan Qijing and Liu Ci, and then convinced the Dark Phoenix and the Nightly Howler to be his allies.
Jing Jiu hadn't done anything at the time. All he did was cultivate silently in the hope that he could catch up to his Big Brother someday so he could help him.
He had become as powerful as his Big Brother at last and stood by his side. Yuan Qijing and Liu Ci had also improved their Cultivation states at an amazing pace. As such, Shangde Peak became strong and powerful. Led by his Big Brother, they had challenged the peaks of Green Mountain. As a result, the inheritance of Green Mountain was resumed after a great deal of turbulence and bloodshed.
Thinking on past events, Jing Jiu walked past the South Pine Pavilion and arrived inside that small building.
The portraits of the grandmasters of various generations and important figures of Green Mountain were hung in here.
The last two were the portraits of the Immortal Taiping and the Immortal Jing Yang.
As he looked at these two portraits, he pondered something.
Though he had never been the sect master of Green Mountain, he was nevertheless qualified to have his portrait hung here.
But, what did his Big Brother mean by sending that letter?
Did it mean that the Immortal Taiping would return to Green Mountain?
He came to the midst of the nine peaks of Green Mountain as he walked round the small building. The Sword Washing Stream under the sunshine looked like a golden ribbon dancing leisurely and gracefully.
Seeing Jing Jiu, the young disciples by the stream were startled. They lined up by the road hastily and said while bowing to him, "Greetings, Senior Master!"
Some brave disciples yelled, "How are you, Senior Master!"
Jing Jiu didn't pay any attention to these young disciples, nor did he nod to them. He continued heading to the deep end of the Sword Washing Stream.
It was not a matter of impoliteness on his part because the gap between their generations was simply too big. In his eyes, these little kids were no different from those monkeys on the cliffs by the stream.
The white cloth had gradually disappeared into the cliff wall by the end of the stream. The young disciples by the stream felt relieved and straightened up in tandem.
They all clutched their chests with a delightful expression on their faces. They thought that they had pretty good luck today as they could meet the rumored young senior master.
Jing Jiu walked another ten miles. The cloud and fog grew thicker as hundreds of stone posts sprang up from the ground, resembling the huge swords.
This place was the arena for the Sword Trial on Green Mountain, which meant that Tianguang Peak was not far ahead.
Jing Jiu walked toward the peak top along the mountain path, instead of riding the sword.
The flying swords passed over the path once in a while.
Seeing the fluttering white cloth on the mountain path, those disciples of Tianguang Peak stopped short and greeted him in cupped hands, and bid their farewell with their eyes as Jing Jiu kept on walking up the mountain.
It didn't take long before Jing Jiu arrived on the top of Tianguang Peak.
Though he hadn't been to Tianguang Peak, he found that the formations on the peak top were basically the same as before.
He walked to the front of the stone monument. He patted the back of the Round Turtle without even glancing at the empty sheath inserted atop the monument.
The Round Turtle opened his eyes and shot him a glance, wondering if he had already made up his mind.
Liu Ci was sitting on the edge of the cliff. He was quite tall, and still looked such even though he sat down. His two feet seemed to be in the ocean of clouds.
Jing Jiu sat down by his side and looked at the ocean of clouds in front of the cliff.
A gentle breeze blew over. It was sunny with a blue sky. The peaks had all peeked above the ocean of clouds. The whole place looked like a fairy land.
Shangde Peak looked like a snowy mountain; the Sword Peak that was shrouded in the cloud and fog all year long was also clearly visible; the sword lights could be seen on Liangwang Peak.
Shiyue Peak and Xilai Peak seemed to be connected together; Bihu Peak looked like a miniature pine tree in the ceramic pot.
The most distant Shenmo Peak looked like a lonely sword.
Qingrong Peak stood right beside Shenmo Peak.
There seemed to be an invisible shield laid by the side of the peaks; and there were many nameless graceful wild peaks on the other side of the shield, which were the rumored hermit peaks.
If one looked farther ahead, they would be able to see the Muddy River.
"Green Mountain looks marvelous," Jing Jiu commented.
Liu Ci remarked, "Green Mountain is quite graceful in my eyes. I think Green Mountain on the other hand views Senior Master the same way."
Jing Jiu uttered, "Hmm."
"Is this your first time to come here?" Liu Ci asked.
Jing Jiu retorted, "Why should I come here when there is nothing significant to talk about?"
"Why did Senior Master come here today?" Liu Ci pressed. "And you have walked here all the way."
"I want to figure something out," Jing Jiu said.
He had been recollecting his memories and also surveying his territory from the South Pine Pavilion to the Sword Washing Stream, then to the Sword Forest, and finally to Tianguang Peak.
After a pause, Liu Ci asked, "What has Senior Master figured out?"
"Green Mountain is mine."
Jing Jiu went on while looking at a spot in the ocean of clouds, "Hence, I will agree to his request."
Liu Ci felt rather sentimental, wondering what reaction the Cultivation circle would have when they found out about this matter.
The history of the past six hundred years in Chaotian had been written mostly by the Immortal Taiping and the Immortal Jing Yang.
They had suppressed the swordsmen of the peaks of Green Mountain in their first collaboration, and the inheritance of Green Mountain resumed.
They had destroyed the headquarters of the Mysterious Dark Sect in their second collaboration, and someone like the Great Grandmaster of the Mysterious Dark Sect was forced to live underground.
As a result, the Green Mountain Sect became the most powerful force in the Cultivation world, and no one dared contend with them.
Though they were far inferior in comparison to their Cultivation state six hundred years ago, they had made the Center Sect suffer a great deal even without direct collaboration; they had achieved the feat by simply connecting their Dao Hearts.
If the two of them collaborated this time, what story would be written in the history of Chaotian then?
"He has written a letter to me as well," said Liu Ci.
Jing Jiu glanced at him without uttering a word.
"That letter was sent to the South Pine Pavilion. Even if I don't say anything, Shangde Peak will find out anyway."
Liu Ci continued, "Maybe he did it as an afterthought; but it might be an excellent way to play us against each other."
No sooner had Liu Ci finished his words that a gust of wind and snow arrived.
As the ocean of clouds rolled up and down, the Three-Foot Sword came out of the ocean of clouds and arrived in front of the cliff of Tianguang Peak. The sword shaft looked a bit dim since it was covered with a layer of thin frost.
"It's hard to tell what his true intentions are. Maybe he did it on purpose to protect you."
The deep voice of Yuan Qijing's came out from the Three-Foot Sword.
Liu Ci knew that Yuan Qijing had been informed by Jing Jiu. He arched his eyebrows slightly, saying nothing.
It was quiet on the top of Tianguang Peak.
It felt a bit depressing at the moment.
The fact that the Immortal Taiping had escaped from the Sword Jail meant that he had a helper on Green Mountain.
The person who could do this must be an important figure.
Over the last thirty years, Jing Jiu, Liu Ci and Yuan Qijing had seldom met, and they had never had an opportunity to talk about this matter; but they all had their own opinions.
Were they going to get to the bottom of this matter today?
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